New National Poll: Trump Dominating GOP Field, But is Weakest in General Election

Guy Benson
|
Posted: Aug 27, 2015 1:30 PM
New National Poll: Trump Dominating GOP Field, But is Weakest in General Election

I spent the morning tweeting about the brand new national Quinnipiac poll of registered voters. Here's a summary of its findings, starting with Hillary Clinton:


And then there's the Biden factor (Sanders and Biden's combined support among Democratic primary voters nearly equals Hillary's in this survey, though she's still well ahead of them separately):


Over on the Republican side, there is a very clear frontrunner.  He's the one who's been sucking up the overwhelming majority of media coverage for weeks on end. How clear is his frontrunner status? Yowza:


The Donald sits at 28 percent support, with Ben Carson next at 12 percent. The four candidates mentioned in the tweet above manage 27 percent support, total. If CNN were to use this poll to select its top ten for the network's upcoming Republican debate, Rand Paul (2 percent) would be on the outside looking in, with Carly Fiorina (5 percent) taking his spot. The Fiorina campaign has been fiercely critical of the CNN/RNC polling formula, which they argue -- credibly, in my view -- leans far too heavily on surveys taken prior to the August debate in Cleveland. Fiorina won rave reviews for her performance in the "undercard" forum and has since vaulted into the middle of the top tier -- yet old polls may again keep her off the main stage.  While Trump leads the GOP pack, he's also at the top of Republicans' "no way" list.  The bigger problem he faces, though, is his lack of viability in a general election setting.  He polls worst against Democrats compared to his GOP rivals; even with universal name recognition (for which most politicians would kill), his "fundamentals" are fatally weak among the overall electorate.  Everyone knows and has an opinion about Donald Trump, and this is what they think (this is data, not my opinion):


Women comprise a majority of the American electorate, with Hispanics representing the largest minority group.  Trump and his fans understandably love to tout surveys showing him leading the GOP primary, but they ignore or dismiss his dead-last performance on telltale measures like personal favorability and temperament among all voters, not just Republican ones. Trump loses to all three Democrats in the survey, including Bernie Sanders -- trailing by the largest margins of those Republicans polled. While Trump is at (-18) on favorability and Hillary is at (-12), Jeb Bush remains underwater at (-9). The word most associated with his candidacy is "Bush," underscoring his greatest vulnerability. The Republicans who fare best on favorability are Carson (+20), Rubio (+14), Kasich (+13) and Fiorina (+12). Of that group, Rubio is far and away the best known, with majorities of voters saying they've never heard of the others.  Candidates like Cruz and Walker sit in the middle of the pack.